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rotors, does it matter?

April 19, 2016, 8:42 p.m.
Posts: 1172
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

have some new zee brakes to go on the new frame. the wheelset has avid rotors (i wasn't even aware what brand). was told they won't work as well with those rotors, should get shimano ones. really?? they are that different?

April 19, 2016, 9 p.m.
Posts: 1352
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

have some new zee brakes to go on the new frame. the wheelset has avid rotors (i wasn't even aware what brand). was told they won't work as well with those rotors, should get shimano ones. really?? they are that different?

For the most part you can use whatever rotor with whatever brake. You do want to be careful with sizing though. Shimano does 160, 180, 203. Avid used to do 160, 185, 203, so depending on the age of the rotors, you could have a 185 for your 7" rotor. (I think they are all 160, 180, 203 now)
Id say try what you've got, make sure they are clean and bed them in well. If they arent up to par, get some Shimano rotors and try them.

April 19, 2016, 10:25 p.m.
Posts: 1172
Joined: Feb. 24, 2017

other than size that's what i thought. the tech at the LBS seems to think otherwise. strange.

April 19, 2016, 11:18 p.m.
Posts: 207
Joined: July 22, 2014

SRAM rotors will work fine with Zees.
No diff.

April 20, 2016, 12:26 a.m.
Posts: 1885
Joined: Oct. 16, 2005

At the end of the day (diameters being equal) any brake will "work" with any rotor.

It is good to be aware that many companies use different rotor thicknesses for their designs and some starting thicknesses are as narrow as other companies minimum thicknesses. Not talking about catastrophic failure (although it is a good idea to check your rotors every once in a while for the minimum thickness as I have seen some nasty rotor breakage never mind performance issues) but it can definitely affect the bite point quite noticeably.

Try running a Magura rotor in a Hope brake or vice-versa and you'd definitely notice what I mean.

For whatever reason (depending on the model of AVID rotor as there are many generations) some Shimano brake /Avid rotor combos are ridiculously loud (brake wharbling), but since you already own the rotors it can't hurt to give them a shot and see if you notice any performance/noise issues.

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April 20, 2016, 12:28 a.m.
Posts: 820
Joined: June 29, 2006

You need to double check that the area where the pads contact the rotor are tall/wide enough.

Shimano traditionally has less tall (but longer) pads than some other companies.

You don´t want the pads to brake too much on the "spoke-esque" part of the rotors.

@JBV: What new frame are you building?

April 20, 2016, 12:58 a.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: April 14, 2011

should work fine, sometimes you might need to put a small washer between the caliper and adapter post mount bolt to lift the caliper a little higher - I've noticed the wavy rotors can foul the top inside of the shimano calipers where the pad spring sits

some shimano brakes/rotors have a narrow/long brake "track" (the real estate the pads operate against), whereas many brakes have a square (equal height/width) brake track, you can check this when you install

I bolted some SLX brakes onto Avid G3 rotors for a customer yesterday after his 2 year old Elixirs packed up, no problems with installation and worked fine on the test ride

April 20, 2016, 6:01 a.m.
Posts: 2398
Joined: Sept. 5, 2012

SRAM does 185MM???? funny mine say 180MM

#northsidetrailbuilders

April 20, 2016, 6:26 a.m.
Posts: 2121
Joined: Nov. 6, 2005

At the end of the day (diameters being equal) any brake will "work" with any rotor.

It is good to be aware that many companies use different rotor thicknesses for their designs and some starting thicknesses are as narrow as other companies minimum thicknesses. Not talking about catastrophic failure (although it is a good idea to check your rotors every once in a while for the minimum thickness as I have seen some nasty rotor breakage never mind performance issues) but it can definitely affect the bite point quite noticeably.

Try running a Magura rotor in a Hope brake or vice-versa and you'd definitely notice what I mean.

For whatever reason (depending on the model of AVID rotor as there are many generations) some Shimano brake /Avid rotor combos are ridiculously loud (brake wharbling), but since you already own the rotors it can't hurt to give them a shot and see if you notice any performance/noise issues.

Andrew's got it… I've generally found that Shimano Ice-tech rotors will work well with any brand of brakes… your experience may vary.

April 20, 2016, 6:40 a.m.
Posts: 4875
Joined: July 9, 2004

Try it if you got it. I changed from Avids a few years back to shimano and gave the rotors a try. No issues, in fact avid rotors worked better with shimano calipers better than avid calipers

April 20, 2016, 11:41 a.m.
Posts: 238
Joined: Nov. 25, 2009

One more up-prop for mAndrew. The Shimano Ice-Tech rotors are better at temperature management (in real life, qualitatively and quantitatively), which does improve brake performance. If you've purchased new brakes, putting new rotors on will help you maximize performance out of the gate.

April 20, 2016, 12:34 p.m.
Posts: 5731
Joined: June 24, 2003

SRAM does 185MM???? funny mine say 180MM

Did do 185. They changed to 180 a few years back.

Debate? Bikes are made for riding not pushing.

April 20, 2016, 1:01 p.m.
Posts: 333
Joined: Dec. 21, 2008

Other than the 180 vs 185 mm issue, I have never had any problems mixing and matching rotors/brakes.

April 20, 2016, 2:13 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: June 12, 2004

Sram doesn't do 185 or 203 anymore. It's 160 180 200. Also some oem spec rotors are 170

April 20, 2016, 2:34 p.m.
Posts: 1168
Joined: May 4, 2006

Sounds like we need another "standard"! :-)

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